Monday, March 31, 2008

Jules Dassin is Blacklisted Once and For All

Scoring Update! The points change, death remains the same...

US film-maker Jules Dassin, a victim of the 1950s anti-communist witch-hunts, died Monday in Athens at the age of 96, hospital sources said. Dassin, who settled in Greece and was married to screen icon Melina Mercouri, died of complications after catching flu, said the hospital.

Congratulations and 18 points each awarded to Live Free or Die Hard and Whoaa-ooah, Dying on the Edge. The Rosters and Standings have been updated.

[AFP]

Ruling Finds That Princess Diana Died from Natural Car-ses


The coroner at the inquest into the death of Britain's Princess Diana in a car crash said on Monday there was no evidence that Queen Elizabeth's husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, had "ordered Diana's execution." Diana died in a car crash in Paris in 1997 along with Dodi al-Fayed, whose father Mohamed al-Fayed has accused Prince Philip, Diana's father-in-law, of being behind her death.

[A]fter almost six months listening to more than 250 witnesses, Lord Justice Scott Baker told the jury in his summing up: "There is no evidence that the Duke of Edinburgh ordered Diana's execution and there is no evidence that the security intelligence service or any other government agency organized it."

The inquest was delayed for 10 years because Britain had to wait for the French legal process and then a British police investigation to run their course before it could begin. Both police inquiries decided it was a tragic accident because chauffeur Henri Paul was drunk and driving too fast.
It sounds to us like the Princess and Dodi were a modern-day Romeo and Juliet...

[Reuters]

Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Earl Of Campbell Cordially Celebrates

Can all non-Nebraskan death row members come back at the italics? Thanks. To the rest of you: Hey inmate guys...I'm afraid I have some bad news. Um, the Nebraska state Supreme Court and I were talking, and...2 things- 1) Thursday's is no longer going to be strawberry ice cream day in the cafeteria and 2) Nebraska is still going to use the electric chair to kill you. I know, I know. I am not thrilled either. But hey... you can still request strawberry ice cream for your final meal. Cheer up, ok?

Today is somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Former NFL Running Back Earl Campbell's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 53! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Earl Campbell's name appears on "It's Always Sunny in Philadeadphia's" roster

  • Earl Campbell's nickname is "The Tyler Rose," a reference to his hometown of Tyler, Texas which is known as the "Rose Capital of America" for its prominent place in the rose-growing industry.
That is of course, not to be confused with "The Rose Tile," available at fine tiling outlets and emporiums near you.


Friday, March 28, 2008

Australian Gothic

I don't want to sound macabre or anything but I just think it's ironic that someone dressed "goth" and more than likely obsessed with death, was murdered. Leave it to Australia for weird deaths.

I'd be afraid if I were today's birthday boy. Maybe someone in Australia doesn't like names that you can't pronounce.

Today is
somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Former National Security Advisor Zbigniew "Can I buy a vowel" Brzezinski's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 80! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Zbigniew Brzezinski's name appears on "Deep Sleepers'" roster

  • Brzezinski was criticized widely in the press and became the least popular member of Carter's administration. Edward Kennedy challenged President Carter for the 1980 Democratic nomination, and at the convention Kennedy's delegates loudly booed Brzezinski. Hurt by internal divisions within his party and a stagnant domestic economy, Carter lost the 1980 presidential election in a landslide. Brzezinski is one of Senator Barack Obama's foreign policy advisers for the presidential campaign of 2008.
That doesn't bode well for Obama's candidacy. Hopefully superdelegates like him more than regular delegates.

Today is somebody else's Birthday! Whose Birthday? CEO of Rockmount Ranch Wear Jack Weil's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 107! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Jack Weil's name appears on "Live Like You Were Dying's" roster
  • Weil is well-known for coining the phrase "The West is not a place, it is a state of mind." He was the first person to put snaps on Western shirts, patented the saw-tooth pocket design seen on many Western shirts, and is credited with inventing the bolo tie.
I'm not sure if any of these things are things you want to be remembered for

... And Many More!

Jonesing for a Fix to Tyrone's Cancer

Background: Tyrone Jones is 46, and a former star player in the CFL. But he's seen better days.

"On a scale of one to 10, I'm a four," he managed over the phone yesterday...

Jones, 46, was given six months to live -- and that was three years ago...

The cancer has disfigured the left side of his face, causing partial paralysis...

"It made the side of his face cave in... He doesn't eat, because the way his face is turned, he really can't chew. And when he swallows, he chokes."
I don't see how this could be worse. Then again, he was a CFL player. If he was an NFL player who had to rely on their sterling care of retired players, he'd probably be dead by now.

[Winnipeg Sun]

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Carving Out the Old Nietzsche


The remains of philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche will need to be moved if a German mining company gets the green light to build a massive brown coal mine on top of the thinker's final resting place in the eastern village of Röcken.

According to German press reports, Mitteldeutsche Braunkohlengesellschaft (Mibrag) has been collecting drill samples from locations around the town and is thinking about developing the mine to secure fuel for an electrical generating station.

"If it's possible to dig around it, we will," she said. "We're aware of the cultural and historical treasures here." They'll be ample time to decide. Even if Mibrag decides to forge ahead with the project, it's not expecting to start mining until 2025. Perhaps the last laugh goes to Nietzsche, whose famous declaration that "God is dead" suggests he really couldn't care less what happens to his remains.
Continuing with Nietzsche's postmodern ideas, we wonder if this opens up the debate about whether what's mine is also philosophically mine.

[National Post]

The Family that Prays Together Doesn't Stay Together

I really don't know what to say about this other than "Don't these people know that Easter was last Sunday?"

After reading this, I fully understand why the Communist Party was so anti-religion.

Today is
somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Screenwriter and Novelist Budd Schulberg's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 94! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Bud Schulberg's name appears on "Live Free or Die Hard's'" roster
  • Schulberg encountered political controversy in 1951 when screenwriter Richard Collins, testifying to the House Un-American Activities Committee, named Schulberg as a former member of the Communist Party. Schulberg immediately volunteered to testify and appeared as a friendly witness. He testified that Party members had sought to influence the content of What Makes Sammy Run and "named names" of other alleged Hollywood communists. His testimony saw many of his colleagues added to the Hollywood blacklist.
Bud and Elaine Benes should hang out. Might I suggest "Hop Sing's" for dinner?

Today is somebody else's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Former Chairwoman of Hewlett Packard Patricia C. Dunn's Birthday. How Old Is She? 1,2,3,4... 55! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Patricia C. Dunn's name appears on "BestDeathPoolRosterEver.BlogSpot.Com's" roster
  • Dunn is married to William Jahnke, a former head of Wells Fargo Investment Advisors. The couple owns a winery in Australia, a home in Hawaii and property in Contra Costa County.
So despite being fired from her job and being diagnosed with various forms of cancer, it seems as though Ms. Dunn is doing just fine.

... And Many More!

The Way to Abby Mann’s Heart Failure


…is through his heart, not his stomach. But still leads to death.

Best Death Pool Ever’s most recent points death was Richard Widmark, who won acclaim in one of his most famous roles in “The Judgment at Nuremberg.” Today, the man who wrote that screenplay has died.

Abby Mann, who won multiple Emmys and a script writing Oscar for "Judgment at Nuremberg," died of heart failure in Beverly Hills at the age of 84.

Mann also believed in a higher purpose to writing, and often focused his work on themes of justice and equality. He once remarked:
"A writer worth his salt at all has an obligation not only to entertain but to comment on the world in which he lives.”
And that’s just salt-worthy writers. Imagine pepper-writers… what about some Cajun seasoning kind of writer? We here at best death pool ever like to fancy ourselves worth our paprika, but feel free to spice this point up in the comments.

[Variety]

Yuri Gagarin's Time Cut Short on Space


Flying in space posed no risks for Yuri Gagarin, the first man to orbit the Earth. Yet a ride in a fighter plane would lead to his death on this day in 1968. Even four decades later, we're still unsure what led to the crash and to Gagarin's death.

Soviet officials made no official announcement as to the cause of the crash and all the details of the accident were archived and marked "Top Secret." On Thursday, a Russian Air Force official rejected suggestions that a new probe should be launched into Gagarin's death, saying: "No additional investigation is necessary." The Kremlin also turned down an appeal for the case to be reopened in 2007.

However, despite top-level reluctance to look into the causes of the accident, even during Soviet times there were whispers and rumors that the cosmonaut's death was due to something more than a routine training flight gone wrong. Although Gagarin was in the process of retraining as a fighter pilot when his plane went down, both he and his instructor, Vladimir Seryoghin, were hugely experienced pilots.
Because of this important experience factor, many theories have surfaced. Some say it's a machinery failure stemming from the afterburners of a passing jet. Others claim it was an order of deliberate sabotage by a jealous Soviet leader.

And then there are the really far-fetched ones. Aliens. And some say it was all a cover-up to misleading propaganda; these were efforts to cover up that Gagarin never made it to space.

We think it was the poor weather conditions that did Gagarin in. It doesn't rain in Space the way it does in Spain.

[RIA Novosti]

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Happy BirthDay O'Connor

I don't have much experience installing Satellite TV, but I'm fairly certain that shooting a gun through the wall isn't the best way to make the holes needed for it.

It's great to live in a country where a woman can be whatever she wants. She can be a Supreme Court Justice or she can choose to marry an insanely stupid man if she so desires.

Today is somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Former Associate Justice of the U.S Supreme Court Sandra Day O'Connor's Birthday. How Old Is She? 1,2,3,4... 78! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Sandra Day O'Connor's name appears on "6 Feet Under's" roster

  • O'Connor attended Stanford Law School for her LL.B, serving on the Stanford Law Review, and graduating toward the top of a class of 102, of which future Chief Justice William Rehnquist was valedictorian. O'Connor briefly dated Rehnquist during this time.
The relationship couldn't work because they each had too many dissenting opinions.

... And Many More!

McDonald's Herb Peterson Led an Eggs-traordinary Life


Herb Peterson, inventor of the Egg McMuffin, has died, a Southern California official of McDonald's restaurants said Wednesday. He was 89. Peterson died peacefully at his Santa Barbara home on Tuesday, said Monte Fraker, vice president of operations for McDonald's restaurants in that city. Peterson came up with idea for the signature McDonald's breakfast item in 1972.

Monte Fraker said that, although semiretired, Peterson still visited all six stores in the Santa Barbara area until last year when his health began to deteriorate. "He would talk to the customers, visit with the employees, he loved McDonald's," Fraker said. Fraker, who said he's worked with Peterson for 30 years, said "he was amazing as far as giving back to the community."

"He embraced the community and the community embraced him," Fraker said. "We loved the man."
Peterson was reportedly partial to eggs Benedict. We hope his remains won't be eggs-umed

[San Jose Mercury News]

I Spy With My Little Eye a Spy and a Nobel Prize Winner

If this guy was casting the evil eye and he was the one murdered, you can only wonder what's going to happen to the person he cast that evil eye upon.

Speaking of evil eyes, we have a birthday of someone who was an evil guy (or an evil spy, whichever pun you prefer).

Yesterday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? German Spy Erich Gimpel's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 98! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Erich Gimpel's name appears on "Kraut's Picks'" roster

  • Gimpel was the last person to be tried before a U.S. military tribunal.
An honor I'm sure he cherishes to this day.

Yesterday was somebody else's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Nobel Laureate Norman Borlaug's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 94! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Norman Borlaug's name appears on "CraigsDeathList.org's" roster
  • In 1986, Borlaug established the World Food Prize to recognize individuals who have improved the quality, quantity or availability of food around the globe.
Based on those criteria, it doesn't seem as though your local Wendy's will have to be making room for a World Food Prize anytime soon.

... And Many More!

Richard Widmark Takes His Kiss of Death

Scoring Update! The points change, death remains the same...

Richard Widmark, an actor whose first movie role as a sneering psychopathic killer overshadowed his six-decade career playing gunfighters, lawmen, doctors and even a president, has died. He was 93. Widmark died Monday at his home in Roxbury, Connecticut, the New York Times reported, citing his wife, Susan Blanchard. She told the newspaper that Widmark had broken a vertebrae and his health had deteriorated in recent months.

Throughout his movie career, Widmark largely shunned publicity. He gave few interviews and supported favorite charities with little fanfare.

He established a scholarship fund at Lake Forest College in 1999 to help finance the education of students interested in theater. He created the Jean and Richard Widmark Foundation, which has funded Alzheimer's and cancer research, environmental conservation and efforts to combat handgun violence and nuclear weapons. He also donated land and a one-room schoolhouse to a local trust in Roxbury, Connecticut, to further the local preservation efforts.
Congratulations and 18 points each awarded to Remains to Be Seen and M"h By You Buddy. The Rosters and Standings have been updated.

[Bloomberg]

Eunice Kennedy Shriver Gets Special Treatment


This isn't Special Olympics founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver's first stint in the hospital. Son Anthony Shriver says she is recovering from pneumonia at University of Miami Hospital.

"She's had challenging health issues for a while now," says Anthony, 42, a Miami Beach resident. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, married to Anthony's sister Maria, said last year during a speech that Eunice had suffered a series of strokes.

Eunice hopes to get out of the hospital Wednesday, Anthony says.
Earlier this month, Congress changed the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) to the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. This recognition honored Kennedy's vision and dedication toward working with the disabled during her long career. These days it seems like all she has left is her vision and her dedication.

[Miami Herald]

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The Bell(e Epoque) Tolls for Azcona

Spanish scriptwriter Rafael Azcona, who wrote the screenplay for the Oscar-winning film "Belle Epoque" starring Penelope Cruz, died Monday at the age of 81.

Azcona's wife Susi said he had been battling lung cancer for a long time, the web site of top-selling daily newspaper El Pais reported Tuesday. Culture Minister Cesar Antonio Molina said Azcona's death "had left the world of film and literature without one of its great storytellers. He wrote with the same intelligence and dignity about comical situations anchored in reality, or of the tragedies of the human being," he said in a statement.
So, to sum up: Rafael cast Cruz, wasn't crude. (Gimme a break!)

[AFP]

Ivan Toms River Dries Up


Ivan Toms put the can in South African, but can no longer put the live in alive.

The South African doctor and director of health for Cape Town, who played a key role in the campaign to end conscription of young white men for the racist apartheid security forces, has died at the age of 55. An autopsy was to be performed to determine the cause of death.

"He was a fighter against apartheid and for human and democratic rights," Mcebisi Skwatsha, secretary of the African National Congress in the Western Cape, was quoted by the South African Press Association as saying. "The passing of Ivan Toms is a great loss to the people of the city and the country."
Toms seems pretty incredible: he single handedly cared for 60,000 people, founded the End Conscription Campaign, undertook a 3-week hunger strike in 1985, helped create a national AIDS program, and was an advocate for gay rights.


He helped stop apartheid, but- sadly- could not save his own hide.

[AP]

Fiji Flooded with People by Josefa Iloilo's Side


Presidents Office Secretary Rupeni Nacewa says that Ratu Josefa Iloilo was not sick and was at the office everyday except on Sundays and public holidays. He said comments by the newly appointed review team leader for the Great Council of Chiefs Ratu Josateki Nawalowalo that the president was sick "was far from the truth and misleading."
"I am perturbed by reports that His Excellency the President is sickly. This particular news item is far from the truth and is misleading," he said.

Ratu Josateki yesterday said that Commodore Bainimarama instructed him to convene a meeting as soon as possible to appoint a Vice President because of Ratu Josefa's health status.
Well, when you surround the man with so many advisors, he was bound to eventually contract something. What do we speculate that to be? Fear. Fear of Bainimarama leading another coup d'etat against him. It's - or otherwise it's his Parkinson's Disease - left Iloilo shaking in his boots.

[Fiji Times]

Let's Cut to the Chase -- Another Wrestler Dead


I know this may come as a shock, but Chase Tatum, a 34-year-old former wrestler died Sunday of a drug overdose:

Roy Tatum told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that his son, Chase Tatum, 34, was found dead around 4 p.m. Sunday in his home in Atlanta's Buckhead neighborhood. Chase Tatum used to wrestle for the now-defunct World Championship Wrestling organization, which was owned by Atlanta media mogul Ted Turner before it was sold to World Wrestling Entertainment. More recently, he appeared in the comedy "Who's Your Caddy?" alongside rapper Big Boi of Outkast.
Tatum's father is quoted as saying Chase was "in the process of getting his life back together." In my book, appearing in "Who's Your Caddy?" shouldn't be part of that process.

[CBS 46]

Monday, March 24, 2008

Artificial Unintelligence

Doesn't this seem a bit much for committing suicide? Wouldn't it be easier just to take pills and be over with it?

None of these people will be building robots to commit suicide anytime soon. None of them strike me as the handy type.

Thursday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? English Singer Vera Lynn's Birthday. How Old Is She? 1,2,3,4... 91! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Vera Lynn's name appears on "The Kick the Bucket List's" roster

  • Lynn released the Lynsey De Paul/Barry Blue penned song "Don't You Remember When" in 1976 as a single. The song showcased her vocal talents as well as had a nostalgic feel and featured backing vocals from De Paul as well as tamborine by her boyfriend Ringo Starr.
If Pete Best knew he'd have such an opportunity, I'm sure he would have fought harder to remain part of the Beatles.

Thursday was somebody else's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Actor/Director/Producer/Writer/Comedian Carl Reiner's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 86! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Carl Reiner's name appears on "6 Feet Under's" and "The South Shall Rise (from the Grave) Again's" rosters
  • In 1959, Reiner developed a television pilot, "Head of the Family," based on his experience on the Caesar shows. However, the network didn't like Reiner in the lead role. In 1961, the recast and retitled show, The Dick Van Dyke Show, edited by Bud Molin became a hit.
Another case of DP 2008 worlds colliding! This time I can imagine Reiner wants to collide right into Van Dyke.

Thursday was somebody else's else's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Mother of the Nation of Islam Ruby Muhammad's Birthday. How Old Is She? 1,2,3,4... 111! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Ruby Muhammad's name appears on 7 DP 2008 rosters
  • In February, Muhammad, now known as Ruby Pittman (the name of her second husband), got a motorized wheelchair as a donation from a scooter store.
She can now join the chase of George Costanza.

... And Many More!

Arthur C. Clarke Accusation A Work of Fiction

We brought you news of Arthur C. Clarke’s death last week, but it is his legacy that has remained a topic of media discussion. Sir Clarke, knighted in 2000 (Was it really not worth it to wait until 2001?), authored over 100 books, but one thing he never gave his byline too were charges of pedophilia that surfaced in Sri Lanka in 1998. The Sri Lankan chief of the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA), Jagath Wellawatte stressed this week that his innocence should be maintained:

"We had no case against Clarke and no one had come forward to say they were abused by him," Wellawatte told AFP. The agency was established under new child protection laws enacted after the allegations against Clarke surfaced. "We have not had any formal complaint or testimony from anyone saying they were abused by Sir Arthur," said NCPA investigator W.T.D. Wijesena. "We cannot go on the basis of rumours."
Even if anything surfaces, with any underage boys, there’s a chance they told Clarke they were 2(00)1.

[AFP]

Mambo’s Israel “Cachao” Lopez Now Dancing with the Stars

The man who set the stage that eventually made it possible for everybody to get in the car and ride to the liquor store around the corner died this Saturday.

Cuban bassist and composer Israel "Cachao" Lopez, who is credited with pioneering the mambo style of music, has died at the age of 89.

"Cachao is our musical father. He is revered by all who have come in contact with him and his music," (Andy Garcia, who made a 1993 documentary about the bassist's career) said in a statement Saturday. "Maestro ... you have been my teacher, and you took me in like a son. So I will continue to rejoice with your music and carry our traditions wherever I go, in your honor."

His death also leaves behind Bam Margera, Marcus "KaPow" Blamjer, Stick Zlott-nick and Graham "Zap" Gooch as the sole living human beings with active Batman verbs contained in their name.

Lopez will be missed and he leaves behind a little bit of Monica- from his life, a little bit of Erica- by his side, a little bit of Rita- all he needed, a little bit of Tina- what he saw, a little bit of Sandra- in the sun, a little bit of Mary- all night long, a little bit of Jessica- here he was.

[Yahoo! News]

Neil Aspinall Hits the Roadie Off the Beatle Path


Neil Aspinall, a close friend of the Beatles and the man who ran the Apple music empire, has died, his family has revealed. The 66-year-old worked as a roadie and accountant for the band before becoming chief executive of Apple Corps. He was known by some in the industry as the real "Fifth Beatle".

In a statement released on behalf of Sir Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, the company described him as a "great man" who would be missed. In the statement, also on behalf of Beatle widows Yoko Ono and Olivia Harrison, Apple Corps said: "As a loyal friend, confidant and chief executive, Neil's trusting stewardship and guidance has left a far-reaching legacy for generations to come.

"All his friends and loved ones will greatly miss him but will always retain the fondest memories of a great man."
When Aspinall took over running Apple Corps, he did so on condition that it was temporary. As it turned out, he only quit the position last year. It sounds like death is what it took to get this Apple to flee the Beatles.

[My Fox Kansas City]

Sunday, March 23, 2008

A Biscuit, a Basket, Al Copeland in a Casket

Scoring Update! The points change, death remains the same...

Al Copeland, a hard-charging, high-living entrepreneur who built an empire on spicy fried chicken and fluffy white biscuits, died Sunday in Munich, Germany, of complications from cancer treatment. He was 64. He had gone to Munich for treatment of his illness, which had been diagnosed in November, said Kit Wohl, his spokeswoman.

Mr. Copeland was "a classic entrepreneur," Peter Ricchiuti, a Tulane University finance professor said. "He had disappointments, things that didn't work out, but that didn't stop him. You can't teach that in a business school. It's something inside you. Maybe it comes from a tremendous desire to succeed against all odds."
Congratulations and 24 points awarded to It's Always Sunny in Philadeadphia. The Rosters and Standings have been updated.

[New Orleans Times-Picayune]

An Actor Named Karl


If you live in Vegas, I guess the principle of "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas" doesn't apply.

Or maybe it does and since the court is in Vegas this count. I don't really know. All I know is I'm getting confused an there's a birthday to get to today.

Yesterday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Award Winning Actor Karl Malden's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 96! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Karl Malden's name appears on 8 DP 2008 rosters

  • For his role as Mitch in "A Streetcar Named Desire," Malden won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. When he attended the awards ceremony for this film, he rented a tuxedo.
Jeez, did he also rent a limo, get drunk and lose his virginity that night too?

... And Many More!

All About Bette: Waxing Nostalgic About Davis


Bette Davis died at 81. But she would have celebrated her 100th birthday next month. From what we've read about her, she sounds like she had feistiness and an overall positive outlook on life...and death.

The actress suggested her own epitaph - "She did it the hard way" - and the core of her lasting allure, and the respect she commands, is our sense that she was no manufactured legend but battled tooth and nail for her success and survival. In This 'N That - written after a stroke and a mastectomy - Davis writes about one of her prize possessions: a pillow embroidered with the motto "Old Age Ain't No Place for Sissies."
Bette Davis' Eyes are now going on 34. A Headline News tribute can be found here.

[Daily Telegraph]

Friday, March 21, 2008

Easy Rider Bill Hayward Takes His Final Ride

Easy Rider" associate producer Bill Hayward, part of a regal Hollywood family whose talent and beauty was often overshadowed by its demons, has died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, authorities said Thursday. He was 66. Hayward shot himself in the heart with a handgun in Castaic on March 9, county coroner's spokesman Craig Harvey said. The suicide occurred in a trailer where Hayward was living. Hayward has already been cremated and a memorial service was planned for April.

"He was a wonderful man and this is a great tragedy for our family," "Easy Rider" director and star Dennis Hopper said in a statement. Hopper was married and had a daughter with Hayward's sister Brooke in the 1960s.

The family's troubles were chronicled in Brooke Hayward's best-selling 1977 memoir "Haywire," which became a 1980 TV movie that Bill Hayward produced. The book discusses Bill and Brooke Hayward's belief that their mother and sister may have killed themselves, and Bill Hayward shared his thoughts on suicide.

"It would be more of a challenge not to do it," he said. "Since it seems to run in the family. It's like trying to beat the system. There must be something inherently weird. The family drops like flies."
This easy rider also loved motorcycles. He had a serious motorcycle accident about five years ago that left him severely injured and mentally diminished. We wonder if he employed one of these on his bike.

[Fresno Bee]

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Death of the Author Jon Hassler


Minnesota novelist Jon Hassler has died of Parkinson's disease at 74. The Minneapolis Star Tribune said Hassler, the author of more than 15 novels for adults and young adults, died Thursday morning. Among his works are "Staggerford," "Grand Opening" and "The Love Hunter."

Much of Hassler's fiction involves characters struggling with transitions in their lives or searching for a central purpose. We believe that Hassler embarked on a similar pursuit during his life and his disease. We call this a novel approach.

[United Press International]

Benjamin Hooks Released from Power Luncheon


Dr. Benjamin Hooks still has the power...we think.

Greater Louisville Inc. and the Kentuckiana Minority Business Council have postponed their upcoming Power Luncheon event because the speaker, Dr. Benjamin L. Hooks, is unable to travel because of health reasons. The luncheon was scheduled for Wednesday, April 2, at the Galt House Hotel & Suites.
Hooks was executive director of the NAACP for 15 years. He received the Presidential Medal of Freedom last year. We hope he can break free of whatever it is that currently plagues him.

[Business First of Louisville]

Seasoned Actor Paul Scofield Ends Run


Paul Scofield, the towering British stage actor who won international fame and an Academy Award for the film "A Man for All Seasons," has died. He was 86. He had been suffering from leukemia.
Actor Richard Burton, once regarded as the natural heir to Laurence Olivier and John Gielgud at the summit of British theater, said it was Scofield who deserved that place. "Of the 10 greatest moments in the theater, eight are Scofield's," he said.

[Scofield] insisted in The Sunday Times in 1992, "my reclusiveness is a myth...Yes, I've turned down quite a lot of parts. At my age you need to weed things out, but the idea that I can't be bothered anymore with acting—that's quite absurd. Acting is all I can do. An actor: That's what I am."
Scofield was also a man for all seasons when not performing. His life was but a stage; Scofield had a time to be More and a time to die. The motion picture, however, is for all times.

[Denver Post]

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Draft Picks and Draft Dodgers

Looks like people from Senegal are big fans of The Godfather.

The only problem is that maybe they shouldn't have taken the term "go to the mattresses" so literally.

Monday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Former Football Player and Coach Sammy Baugh's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 94! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Sammy Baugh's name appears on "CraigsDeathList.org's" and "Live Free or Die Hard's" rosters

  • Baugh was the first coach of the AFL's New York Titans. The Titans would later become the modern day New York Jets.
He must be proud to be the forerunner of immortal coaches such as Rich Kotite, Bruce Coslet, and Herman Edwards.

Monday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Author William Gibson's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 60! And Never been Kissed By... Death

William Gibson's name appears on "Extended Weekend at Bernie's" roster
  • In 1967, he elected to move to Canada in order "to avoid the Vietnam war draft." At his draft hearing, he informed interviewers honestly that his intention in life was to sample every mind-altering substance in existence
He and Pete Doherty should talk. Both picks in DP 008, birthdays within a week of each other, and a love for mind expanding drugs. Groovy!

... And Many More!

Sir Mix-A-Dead

I guess this guy just needed to mix up his life a little bit.

If only they used a little Flubber at this work site. Well, I'm not quite sure what how Flubber would help, but at least it brings us to somebody's birthday...

Sunday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Comedian Jerry Lewis' Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 82! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Jerry Lewis' name appears on "A Time to Kill's", "Extended Weekend at Bernie's", and "Up The Arsenal!'s" rosters

  • Lewis taught a film directing class at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles for a number of years, mentoring such students as George Lucas. In 1968, he screened Steven Spielberg's early film Amblin' and told his students, "That's what filmmaking is all about".
Seems like he wasn't that nutty of a professor after all.

... And Many More!

Dick Van Dyke Still Merry, Poppin' Jokes and Wisdom


Usually when someone 82 years old spits out some gibberish, we begin to wonder about their health. But in the case of Dick Van Dyke, it's a sign of his durdoadidumdability.

Van Dyke sang "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" on Monday night at the Geffen Playhouse during a tribute to actress Annette Bening and studio chief Robert A. Iger.

Van Dyke even recreated a bit of the choreography from "Mary Poppins" with the current Broadway stars of "Poppins" and "Mermaid," Ashley Brown and Sierra Boggess. "The secret to keeping moving," Van Dyke said, "is keeping moving."
It's when he topples over furniture he doesn't see that we begin to grow concerned.

[CNN]

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Sticks and Stoners

Sticks and stones may break your bones. They also may kill you. Well, the big sticks at least.

Saturday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Former Member of the Grateful Dead Phil Lesh's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 68! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Phil Lesh's name appears on "Last Call's" roster

  • Lesh started out as a violin player, but in high school, he switched to trumpet, studying under Bob Hansen, and had a keen interest in avant-garde classical music and free jazz.
Sounds like the kinda guy Jerry Garcia needed to complete the Grateful Dead's sound.

... And Many More!

Arthur C. Clarke's Odyssey Ends in 2008

Scoring Update! The points change, death remains the same...

An aide says science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke has died. Rohan De Silva says Clarke died early Wednesday after suffering from breathing problems. He was 90. Clarke is the author of more than 100 books, including “2001: A Space Odyssey.”

Congratulations and 12 points each awarded to TIREMAN422, Live Like You Were Dying and Do Not Resuscitate. The Rosters and Standings have been updated.

[MSNBC]

Dial up the Sad Meter; Record-setting Pilot Dead at 26


At age 11, Vicki Van Meter piloting a plane across the country. At age 12, she flew from the U.S. to Europe. Sadly, at age 26, she died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Her brother said she battled depression and opposed medication, but her family thought she had been dealing with her problems. "She was unhappy, but it was hard for her to open up about that and we all thought that she was coping," Daniel Van Meter said. "This really is a shock, because we didn't see the signs."

Van Meter made national headlines in 1993 and 1994 when she made her cross-country and trans-Atlantic flights accompanied only by a flight instructor. Her instructors said she was at the controls during the entirety of both flights.
After her famous youth, she earned a degree in criminal justice from Edinboro University in Pennsylvania and spent two years with the Peace Corps in Cahul, Moldova. Said her mother: "She led a full and interesting life...She had more guts than any of us could ever imagine."

[AP]

Anthony Minghella, The English Patient, Direct to Release


Anthony Minghella, who won an Oscar for The English Patient and directed such hit movies as The Talented Mr. Ripley, Cold Mountain and Truly Madly Deeply, has died. He was 54.

The English Patient, based on the acclaimed novel by Canadian writer Michael Ondaatje, tells of a burn victim's tortured recollections of his misdeeds in time of war. It won nine Oscars in all, including best picture, best supporting actress for Juliette Binoche, and a raft of technical Oscars including best film editing, best costume design and cinematography.

Minghella also turned his talents to the opera stage. In 2006, he directed an acclaimed staging of Puccini's Madama Butterfly at New York's Metropolitan opera.
No cause of death has been reported just yet, but we suspect whatever it was was long, drawn out and historical.

[USA Today]

Sub-Prime Mortgage Pioneer Collapses; Roland Arnall in Shambles

The economy is dying. That's not quite enough of a story for us to cover on this here blog. Except for one thing: The economy is so bad, it is killing the people who brought us down this road.

Roland Arnall, the founder of Ameriquest Mortgages, and a leading figure of the sub-prime mortgage scandal because of accusations of its wrongdoing, has died at the age of 68. The cause of death was officially cancer, but those who knew him say that he really died of a broken heart mortgage backed security.

Arnall was also a major Republican donor with strong ties to President Bush, and President Bush appointed him ambassador to the Netherlands in 2006.

"Thank you for the trust you placed in me, and the opportunity to serve our country," Arnall wrote to President Bush in a letter in February.
In turn, President Bush was concerned by this development, but assured the Arnall family that Roland was "strong" and "going to be fine." The President said that he would not call this a 'death,' inasmuch as a permanent life cessation. Finally, he pledged to give the Arnalls a $600 rebate, a move which he assured would revive the dormant Arnall.

[International Herald Tribune]

John Ed Cothran Got No Sleep Till Death


Tough week so far for former Civil Rights lawmen, we'd say.

John Ed Cothran, a former sheriff's deputy who investigated the 1955 slaying of Emmett Till, which galvanized the civil rights movement, has died of heart failure. He was 93.

On Aug. 31, 1955, Cothran, then Leflore County chief deputy, helped pull Till's bloated and mutilated body out of the Tallahatchie River. Till, a black 14-year-old visiting from Chicago, was reported to have whistled at a white woman in the rural community of Money.

The investigation was reopened in 2004. In 2006 a Leflore County grand jury declined to indict 73-year-old Carolyn Bryant Donham, the woman Till had supposedly whistled at. In a 2005 interview with the Greenwood Commonwealth, Cothran said he had lost his memories of the investigation by the time two FBI agents approached him after the bureau reopened the case.
We think that James Nabrit should take care of himself more this week than ever.

[Yahoo! News]

Monday, March 17, 2008

No Soup For Ayman Nour!


From the time of the ancient Hebrews, there is a long history of persecuted people wanting out of Egypt. Ayman Nour is the latest in that line. Nour is in Egyptian prison, in what is widely believed to be a political maneuver by President Mubarak. In reaction, Nour has gone on a hunger strike.

Cool. Very Temple of The Dog of him.

The problem is that he is a diabetic, and not eating might kill him. He needs sugar. More Sugar. So should the Egyptian governement let him cross to the hospital so he doesn't drown in the Dead Sea?

Nope, said the Supreme Administrative Court in Cairo today. Nour will stay in prison, and for his sake, he better abandon the eating habits of Paris Hilton.

I only wish Cameron and Ferris were running the protests. I could really go for a "When Ayman was in Egypt's land...Let my Ayman Go!"

[Reuters]

Ola Brunkert Drummed Out After Being Cut


A former drummer for the Swedish pop band ABBA was found dead with cuts to his neck in the garden of his house on the Spanish island of Mallorca. Police said Monday an autopsy showed it was an accident. A neighbor found the body of 62-year-old Ola Brunkert on Sunday evening at his house.

Band member Bjorn Ulvaeus added that Brunkert had been "one of the best."

"I remember him as a good friend when we worked together in the mid-1970s. He was a very creative musician who contributed a lot when we toured together and worked in the studio," Ulvaeus told Expressen.
A spokesman said that "Brunkert hit his head against a glass door in his dining room, shattering the glass and cutting himself in the neck. He managed to wrap a towel around his neck and left the house to seek help, but collapsed in the garden."

This strikes us as crash cymbalism for the rise and fall of 70's rock music.

[AP]

Don't Spill the Beans (Into Old People's Mouths)

Beans, Beans They're Good for the Heart!!!

Except if they happen to be wax beans.

Moral of the story: Make sure to be super duper famous (i.e. DP 2009 eligible) when you get admitted to a nursing home so they don't screw up what you're supposed to eat.

Friday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Former Ziegfeld Girl Doris Eaton Travis' Birthday. How Old Is She? 1,2,3,4... 104! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Doris Eaton Travis' name appears on "Live Like You Were Dying's" and "Oldies But Goodies'" rosters

  • In January 2008, Travis served as the Grand Marshal of the opening parade for the Art Deco Weekend festival in Miami Beach.
Good to see that even at 103 she's doing what most 70 year olds are doing.

Friday was somebody else's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Former Secretary of Labor W. Willard Wirtz's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 96! And Never been Kissed By... Death

W. Willard Wirtz's name appears on "Grateful(ly) Dead's" roster
  • Since the 2008 death of Earl Butz, Wirtz has been the oldest living former cabinet member.
A real case of DP 2008 worlds colliding!

Friday was somebody else's else's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Head Coach of the N.C. State Women's Basketball Team Kay Yow's Birthday. How Old Is She? 1,2,3,4... 66! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Kay Yow's name appears on "Dead Place's" roster
  • Yow currently ranks as the fifth winningest active NCAA Division I women's basketball coach.
But she ranks 1st in active Division I women's basketball coaches selected for DP 2008.

... And Many More!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

The Dread-ed Death Grip Leaves Mikey Without a Beat

Scoring Update! The points change, death remains the same...

Radio disc jock Mikey Dread is dead. He succumbed to a brain tumour late yesterday afternoon at his family home in Connecticut, USA at the age of 54. Born Michael Campbell in Port Antonio, Jamaica, he distinguished himself as an extraordinary studio engineer and presenter.

"Michael Campbell, is someone who revolutionised radio in Jamaica when there was still an anti-Jamaican sentiment regarding music and culture. In terms of the emerging dancehall, it was Mikey Dread who popularised it on radio. Although it was late night, he still managed to popularise dancehall music and bring it to the masses," was the perspective of Dennis Howard who also worked on JBC Radio, in the post-Mikey Dread era.
Congratulations and 24 points awarded to Daddy to Be Dead Mates. The Rosters and Standings have been updated.

[Jamaica Observor]

Pointer Reduction Terminates Judge Sam's Service


Retired U.S. District Judge Sam C. Pointer Jr., who served nearly 30 years on the court and endured death threats for his school integration rulings in Birmingham, has died. He was 73. Pointer, who died Saturday at a hospital from illness, his wife said, had retired from the court about eight years ago.

"The legal community revered Judge Pointer for both his brilliance and his wonderful temperament," said Chief U.S. District Judge Sharon Lovelace Blackburn. "Judge Pointer's legacy of service to this court and to the nation may one day be equaled, but never surpassed."
Pointer helped desegregate school systems in Birmingham and surrounding Alabama areas. That was spurned on by the Civil Rights movement, led by Martin Luther King, Jr. Since Pointer also presided over the litigation of some 26,000 silicone-gel breast implant lawsuits in the 1990s, we guess Pointer's career ran the gamut from King to Cone.

[Al.com]

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Jesus Shocked Anyone Would Dare Cross Him


Leading up to Easter Sunday, many Christians' thoughts are focused on Jesus' Crucifixion and resurrection. A new book explores the cause of Jesus' death.

In his book, "The Crucifixion of Jesus: A Forensic Inquiry," Frederick T. Zugibe, a New York medical examiner who is an expert on the Crucifixion, said there were two causes:

• hypovolemic shock, marked by significant blood loss and dehydration; and

• traumatic shock, caused by the physical abuse to Jesus.
Others agree with Zugibe's assessment. Zugibe says that the scripture supports his theory that Jesus experienced hematidrosis, an excretion of blood or blood pigments in the sweat. But scourging was the major reason for Jesus' death.
In his book, Zugibe, chief medical examiner of Rockland County, N.Y., for more than 30 years, concludes that Jesus died from "cardiac and respiratory arrest, due to hypovolemic and traumatic shock, due to crucifixion."
Sounds like another case solved by the crime scene investigators on CSI: Nazareth. And just in the nick of time to make the streets a little bit safer on Easter Sunday.

[Wichita Eagle]

Friday, March 14, 2008

Son of a Lubich! Chiara Dead


November 2nd is "All Souls Day;" March 14th, aside from being Pi Day, is one soul's day. The soul? It is that of Chiara Lubich.

One of the most influential women in Catholicism, Chiara Lubich, who founded the international Focolare movement of the Roman Catholic Church, died on Friday at the age of 88. The Focolare movement, which has members in over 180 countries, aims to spread Christian values by strengthening traditional families and promoting ecumenical and inter-religious dialogue.

Lubich got her inspiration during the horrors of World War Two, when she was a school teacher. At the age of 23, she said she experienced a religious awakening and felt a call to alleviate human suffering. She won numerous awards, including the Templeton Foundation Prize for Progress in Religion and the Unesco peace prize.
This all goes to prove Tina Fey's maxim: Lubiches get things done.

[Reuters]

Arlen Specter in Favor of His Reformed Health


Senator Arlen Specter has written a book, due out next week, about his recent bout with Hodgkin's disease. next week. "Never Give In: Battling Cancer - and Politicians - in the Senate" follows Specter's autobiography, "Passion for Truth," published in 2000.

These books cover Specter's near extinction from the political arena over the past few decades, and from the world in the past few years. He gets beat around more than the Washington Senators used to before they faced extinction from Major League Baseball.

Healthwise, he's been misdiagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease (1979), had two brain tumor operations (1993, 1996) and a near-death experience after complications from a quadruple bypass operation (1998). But his gravest challenge was the 2005 diagnosis of late-stage Hodgkins disease (cancer of the lymph system) at age 75.
How did Specter get through it all?
Specter's solution for the debilitating effects of chemotherapy was simple: "Work, work, work." He plowed straight ahead as chairman of the Judiciary Committee on contentious issues like judicial nominations that nearly ground the Senate to a halt.

"In a sense, the tougher the day, the better I liked it," Specter writes in the book. "It kept my mind off me."
Now that Specter's cancer is in remission, he's urging other people facing illness to find strength beyond their suffering. Or, as we choose to call it, an Introspecter Look.

[Philadelphia Daily News]

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Don't Mess With the Boss

I like Bruce Springsteen as much as the next guy, but this just strikes me as ridiculous.

If only Kevin Lee Watson was "Born to Run" maybe he could have ran away from Karen Lee Cooper.

Today is somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Former Football Player Sherrill Headrick's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 71! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Sherrill Headrick's name appears on "It's Always Sunny in Philadeadphia's" roster

  • In his book "The American Football League - A Year-by-Year History, 1960-1969" Ed Gruver quotes Texans/Chiefs coach Hank Stram as saying that Headrick, who refused to wear hip pads, had the highest pain threshold [he'd] ever seen in an athlete. Headrick played with a broken neck, infected gums, and a fractured thumb. When an injury left the bone in his finger protruding from the skin, Headrick popped the bone in place without missing a play.
I've played football with a bloody nose, so suck it Sherrill Headrick and Hank Stram.

... And Many More!

Happy Birthday for Some; Not for Others

One of the great things about being famous, besides being eligible as a pick for DP, is worldwide recognition.

Some people get recognized for being great playwrights on their birthdays.

Some people don't.

Yesterday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Playwright Edward Albee's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 80! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Edward Albee's name appears on "The Quit Parade's" roster

  • Albee is the President of the Edward F. Albee Foundation, Inc., which maintains the William Flanagan Creative Persons Center, a writers and artists colony in Montauk, New York.
I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Albee had an easier time being elected President of his own foundation than Ron Paul will have being elected President of the United States.

Yesterday was somebody else's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Ex-Boyfriend of Kate Moss Pete Doherty's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 29! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Pete Doherty's name appears on "I Am Ready To Meet My Maker's" roster
  • Doherty is also known to be a devoted follower of the Queens Park Rangers football club. As a youth he wrote a fanzine, entitled "All Quiet on the Western Avenue". He sold copies of the fanzine on the club's grounds, but its mixture of literary references, quotes, poetry and football stories proved unsuccessful with the other fans.
Are you telling me soccer hooligans don't read Shakespeare???

... And Many More!

Chad Kroeger's Card Has Been Punched, Hanging On for Dear Life


We have our first piece of news relevant to Death Pool 2015. While we don't know if everything will be Lost then, we understand that musician Chad Kroeger thinks he will be.
Chad Kroeger of Nickelback already knows how he'll celebrate his 40th birthday: he'll be in a coffin. Kroeger tells Playboy he had a dream that he will die on his 40th birthday.

He says, "It's been foretold. I will be dead on my 40th birthday."
Might we suggest he give this place a call in advance?

If Kroeger has to go on listening to his music day in and out for the next seven years, we suspect he may die even sooner than that. Not because it's loud and could kill him. Rather, he may wind up killing himself because it's so unbearably bad.

[KWTX.com]

Wait a Minute, That's Not Old Ma(rily)n Monroe...


Every once in a while, we here at Best Death Pool Ever will gather up our magnifying glasses, constable hats, trench coats, and scooby snacks and pack into the Mystery Van. (In case you were wondering, Fine Fellow is our Velma. Same bowl haircut.)

In today's episode, our gang helps psychiatrist Jack Hattem investigates a ghost that won't leave society alone, even popping up and spooking people in magazines (NSFW-ish): The ghost of Marilyn Monroe.

Jack Hattem has set out to answer a simple mystery: What really happened to Marilyn Monroe?

In true Mystery Van style, we gathered the clues.

Clue #1 - Toxic Relationships
Joe Dimaggio, Arthur Miller, and the Kennedy Brothers

(Hatten) came to the conclusion that, in the right circumstances, with the right people, a toxic relationship gives someone the power to coax suicide. "The perfect murder," he says, "with words and feelings as the weapon."
Clue #2 - The Case of the Faulty Garage Door
Decades later, (Hatten) would find echoes of (calls for help) in Monroe's death. What, he thought, would stop one or more of the people in Marilyn's life – a Kennedy, perhaps? – from convincing her to fake a suicide attempt for attention? And what would stop that "fake" suicide from going wrong, like the woman in the garage?
Like all good mysteries, this one might surprise you:
"I set out to prove it was a suicide. But I came to the wrong conclusion. But in a mystery, there's always a surprise."
So who killed Monroe? Hattem, in his book (SPOILER ALERT), helps us unmask the real killer.

Wait a minute... underneath this mask... it's not Marylin Monroe committing suicide... it's Bobby Kennedy!...and he would have gotten away with it, too, if it wasn't for us meddling kids.

[O.C. Register]

Russell Watson's Voice Tells Him to Go On


Russell Watson has revealed he will go on tour just months after fears he would die from a brain tumour. The opera singer was told he might never perform again after an operation in October to remove the growth was followed by intensive radiology.

But a source close to the dad-of-two, 41, said: "It's something Russell really wants to do - to prove to himself as well as his fans he is back to his best.

"It doesn't seem long since his operation but he feels he is ready.

"Russell has at least a day off between the dates so it won't exert him too much."
This tour may not bode well for the Sagittarius. His opposite sign is Gemini, and Watson's tour kicks off during the June Gemini season. We can only hope that Watson can prove once again that he is a Gemini in the rough.

[Daily Mirror]

Than's Health Indicators Shwe-ing Towards "Failing"

Burma's Ministry of Information has brushed aside rumors that Head of State Senior General Than Shwe's health is failing and that he is currently hospitalized.

The other side of the story?

A source close to the military establishment in Rangoon said, "I heard that his health has been deteriorating for about a week."

Similarly, rumors are spreading among the Burmese exile community that Than Shwe is suffering from colon cancer for which he is currently receiving treatment.

The rumor is spreading rapidly via blogs operated by Burmese bloggers both inside and outside the country.

Don't they mean Myanmar bloggers? Guess it'll always be Burma to them.

[Mizzima News]

Yet Another Scandal For The Democratic Party!

Unless you're living under an Empire Club hooker, I'm sure you've come across the news of the wealthy lawyer turned hot shot Democratic politician, famous for his legislative abilities and for taking on big business, who was forced to step down in the wake of scandalous news.

We refer, of course, to former Ohio Senator Howard Metzenbaum, who was forced to step down from his post as a living person after it was revealed today that, despite his vocal senatorial efforts to keep people alive, he has, hypocritically, died. Worse yet, reports are surfacing that this Deathgate scandal may have been ninety years in the making, and that Metzenbaum may have spent obscene amounts of money to finance his life habit.

Metzenbaum is survived by his wife Shirley, surely the victim in this case. We wonder if she too, like all the wives before her, will be forced to stand by his side at the inevitable funeral conference.











Spitzer and Metzenbaum.
Not quite living up to expectations...

[CNN]

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Talkin' Murdoch

Brick Tamland likes to do his killing via the trident to the chest. However, it seems as though the weapon of choice for killing in the Lancaster, California area is an arrow.

Since Rupert Murdoch is against all killings with sharp objects, News Corp failed to distribute Anchorman. This however did not stop him from having a birthday.

Yesterday was somebody's Birthday! Whose Birthday? Media Mogul Rupert Murdoch's Birthday. How Old Is He? 1,2,3,4... 77! And Never been Kissed By... Death

Rupert Murdoch's name appears on "6 Feet Under's" roster

  • Rupert Murdoch has been portrayed by Barry Humphries in the 1991 mini-series Selling Hitler, Ben Mendelsohn in Black and White, Paul Elder in The Late Shift and by himself on The Simpsons.
Jose Canseco and Roger Clemens were also guest stars on The Simpsons. Look at the picture and tell me you aren't as suspicious as I am. His head is huge.

... And Many More!

Billy Graham Hasn't Cracked Yet, Here For S'more

There are just certain people that popular newspapers seem to think are dead. And those that people seem to think are dead. The latest example comes from the Washington Post:

A March 9 Magazine article about hospitals in North Korea incorrectly referred to "the late evangelist Billy Graham." Graham, 89, lives near Asheville, N.C.
Maybe the writer confused Billy for his deceased wife Ruth. Because we know for a fact that Billy is alive and preaching. Wichita Eagle 1 Washington Post 0.

[Washington Post]
[Wichita Eagle]

Richard Burke Hits the Brakes on His Trek


Richard "Dick" Burke, the founder of best-selling bicycle-maker, Trek Bicycle Corp., has died. Burke died Monday night at a Milwaukee hospital from complications from heart surgery, said his son, John Burke, the company's president. He was 73.

Trek is known among cyclists for making the bikes that Lance Armstrong rode in his Tour de France victories. Those models feature carbon fiber frames and can sell for thousands of dollars. The company — known for brands including Trek, Gary Fisher, Klein and Greg LeMond — sells 1.5 million bikes a year and does $700 million (€455 million) in sales.

"He always wanted to build the best bicycle company in the world and he did it," John Burke said.
Burke had already handed the company over to his son, John, whose training wheels have come off. We're sad to see the old steerer go.

[International Herald Tribune]

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Eliot Spitzer Not the Only John at Home with a Wooden

Previously on "John Wooden is Still Alive" -

In Part 1 of A Very Special "John Wooden is Still Alive" (JWISA), we brought you news of his fall...

[Cut to scene] I'm John Wooden and my collarbone hurts!

Then in Part 2 of A Very Special JWISA, the breaks that had shattered Wooden were beginning to heal, when...
[Cut to scene] I'm John Wooden and my heart hurts!

Without further ado, we are proud to bring you the third installment of this heart wrenching series. And now for Part 3, the conclusion of A Very Special JWISA...The Homecoming!

John Wooden, who was on the bubble about where he would be after his hospital season ended, was selected to move on to a rehabilitation center. This year, Wooden, despite many challenges has kept his 97 year living streak active:
"Dad had one of his better days today," his son, Jim Wooden, said in a statement. "He will do exercises two to three times daily. As soon as his strength is back, we will get him home." Wooden said his father wanted to thank everyone for their kind thoughts and the many get-well cards he has received.
No word yet on whether blogs count as "get-well cards" or whether BestDeathPoolEver can be categorized as kind thoughts. We hope so.

Next Week on "John Wooden is Still Alive," with special guest star Britney Spears...
[Cut to Scene] Ohmygod, ya'll... John Wooden is Still Alive!

Compelling and rich.

[ESPN]

Esquire Magazine Keeps Heath's Ledger


Margaret B. Jones
Misha Defonseca
Ishmael Beah

What do these people have in common? Well, all three were not drug selling gang soldiers living amongst wolves. But that’s not all. All three are liars, too.

As it turns out, none of these authors did even one of those three. Despite claims to the contrary, Jones did not run drugs for the Bloods of Los Angeles, Defonseca was not rescued from the Holocaust by wolves, nor was Beah actually a child soldier. All three were recently revealed to have lied in their memoirs. And an upcoming piece in Esquire Magazine may be catching up on the fad.

In this month’s Esquire, Lisa Taddeo jots down a controversial fictional diary entry entitled “The Last Days of Heath Ledger.” In the piece, Taddeo conjures up the last few days before Ledger’s surprising death including details of who he spoke with (Jack Nicholson in person, Michelle Williams on email, Mary-Kate Olsen on the phone), what he ate (steak and eggs, banana-nut muffins), where he hung out (The Beatrice), what he wore (a ski mask), and whose music he listened to (Nick Drake).

The penultimate part of the story (as if banana-nut muffins wasn’t epic enough) comes in the last section entitled “The Final Curtain,” where the ventriloquist Taddeo has Ledger explain:

What I'd ask of you, out of respect, not for me--I'm deaf and blind to it now--but for the living I left, is to leave it alone. Don't investigate my last few days, because these could be your last few days. Play your own part. And don't tell me what I did. I didn't play the piano or fuck Lindsay Lohan or fill my goody bag to the brim at the Venice Film Festival. In fact, I'm not really sure I did too much that you personally should remember, beyond make a beautiful little girl, the one thing every guy wants to be able to say he did. So that's it, my final unedited shot: Matilda. She is what lives on. The rest is just bullshit.
Is it ironic for Taddeo to investigate Ledger’s last few days and voice the thought that the rest of us shouldn’t? Well, it depends if you know what irony is. If you do know the definition of irony, then yes- it is ironic.

Why write the controversial piece? Taddeo answers it herself, at the start of the piece:

It becomes theatrically important, after you die, what your last few days are like.
Theatrically important, eh? I wonder if Esquire may have done it because it is financially important, too…I bet there’s more money lying around the Esquire offices for banana-nut muffins nowadays.

[Esquire]
[NY Post]